Autumnal Days- Looking Forward, Looking Back

Updated: Nov 11, 2020

The year 2020 has been a wild blur of paint. A surge of creative juice began pumping on January 1st and has yet to recede. First came a series of abstract landscape paintings, an effort that was both freeing and exhilarating. I challenged myself to work without visual reference and to use uncommon tools. The result was "The Shore" and "The River" series. An expired credit card was my tool for making "The River #1". Flexible yet firm, the credit card allowed me to push the paint around in ways a brush simply cannot. (Note to self: try that again.)


In February I began and completed a large abstract oil painting called "Secret Message". At 24 x 36 x 1 inches it hangs nicely in my dining room. I wanted my husband to decipher the message! Hilariously, he could not. I love him anyway. Now, nine months later I am finally ready to let this painting go. (I have a hard time letting paintings go, but I am getting better.) You can find it on my "gallery" page if you want to try to decipher the message.


March 2020 hit us like a train. We learned to live a new normal under a global pandemic and stay-at-home orders. Everyone was stressed beyond measure. My reaction was to read the news each morning, take a walk when possible, and to process the barrage of information coming at us. In the afternoons I worked in my studio, slowly filling the pages of an art journal, creating what in the end became the illustrated book, Pandemic Pages: Sketches From My Quarantine Diary. Filling the pages of this art journal helped me find moments of levity or release while processing each days news. I shared these images with my Facebook friends and as it became evident that I had completed nearly 70 pages (!) I was encouraged to turn the images into a book. (The process of creating, editing, and publishing a book is a real task. So much to learn! My husband is working diligently on this front, and we hope to offer the final book in November.) Meanwhile, you can peruse the book sample on my "Gallery" page.


By the time May came around I could no longer face the daily news in the same way. Instead of analyzing the use of face masks (yet again) and how long to let your cardboard packages sit in the garage before safely touching them, I turned sharply back to making art. Painting. Going back to the emotionally satisfying act of working in abstraction. I started small, completing a painting ever few days.

This series is huge! Abstract #1 was completed on May 6, 2020. Today, seven months later, I am on Abstract #79.

I look back on the wall calendar where I record my daily work, and every single day of every month is jammed with notes.


Today, I pause and look back on the road that has led me through the bumps and crashes of this crazy year and strangely... Give thanks. Thank you to my husband, Paul, who lifts me up each day. Thank you to my friends and family who have encouraged my painting over the years, and even now as they themselves face difficult times. A special thanks to YOU, for taking the time to visit me here. Your care keeps me motivated to keep on creating.


I invite you to come back and visit to see new painting collections as they emerge over the coming months and year.


Until another day.


In peace,

Sheree


The River #2 , acrylic on panel, 9 x 12 inches


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